Texting While Driving In Florida…

Texting While Driving in Florida: Dangerous and Against the Law!

The Florida ban on texting while driving law is found at Florida Statute §316.305.  Incredibly, although everyone knows it’s a careless and dangerous practice, it is still only a secondary offense (F.S. 316.305(1)(d)).  This means to be cited (receive a ticket) for texting while driving (TWD), a motor-vehicle operator must be detained (pulled over or stopped) for another type of violation (i.e., speeding, running a red light, taillight out, etc.)  (F.S. 316.305(5)).

Evidence of texting will be admissible in criminal and civil proceedings where the driver that was texting while driving cased a crash involving death or personal injury.  In those cases, cell phone bills or other written evidence of TWD will be admissible in Court.  (F.S. 316.305(7)(c)).

TWD is distracted driving.  The U.S. Department of Transportation has recognized that such a major problem exists with distracted driving that they have funded an education campaign known as www.Distraction.gov.  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has instituted an extensive education effort aimed at young drivers using powerful YouTube videos that graphically depict the danger of texting behind the wheel.  The statistics are overwhelming.  The National Safety Counsel reports that 330,000 injuries occur each year from accidents caused by TWD.  The list goes on and on.  More incredible is the fact that TWD makes you 23 times more likely to crash – the same as driving after 4 beers!  Despite this indisputable evidence, 800,000 drivers are doing it at any given time across the country.

Certainly, no one can argue that TWD is negligent.  Florida courts are starting to hold that it may even rise to the level of recklessness (an intentional act like driving while intoxicated).  This clear and obvious danger of TWD has led to Plaintiffs (people bringing lawsuits) to seek punitive damages under Florida Statutes §768.72 (1) and (2).  To make a claim for punitive damages against a driver that has caused personal injury or death due to a crash while texting, an injured party needs to prove gross negligence that indicates a wanton disregard for the rights of others.  (As early as 2011, Florida courts began allowing punitive damage claims against a Defendant whose conduct (TWD) caused a car crash resulting in death (Margaret S. Caskey, et. al. v. Astellas Pharma US, Inc., et. al., Collier County Case No. 112010 CA 0005820001XX (Fla. Collier Cir. Ct. 2011).  It should be noted that regular insurance policies do not provide coverage for these damages.  Since 2011, discovery of electronic records and data has become increasingly more sophisticated in criminal and civil cases and text message histories are readily obtainable.  This evidentiary proof will continue to become more accessible and verifiable in injury and death cases.  Phone records, billing records, and screen shots are the proverbial “smoking gun” in modern distracted driving cases.

Jeffrey R. Davis, P.A. is a Florida injury law firm that has more than 30 years’ experience in representing victims of personal injury and wrongful death.  We handle cases throughout Florida involving texting while driving and distracted driving claims.  Please contact us for a free case evaluation.

Why You’ll Need a Personal Injury Lawyer for Your Car Accident Case

Personal Injury Lawyers serving Miami, North Miami, North Miami Beach, Sunny Isles, and More

Jeffrey R. Davis is a personal injury lawyer in Miami, FL that is ready and able to help you with your personal injuries due to car accidents. Unfortunately, car accidents happen, and sometimes they are serious. If you or someone you care about has been involved in a serious car accident, you’ll need a personal injury lawyer.

Our Miami Car Accident Lawyers Are Reputable

The number one reason why you’ll need a car accident lawyer in Miami, FL is if you or someone you care about has been hurt, especially if the injury is permanent. Your lawyer will help you recover the cost of your medical bills, general damages, and take into consideration the time lost in school, work, or household duties.

Involved in a Pedestrian Accident? Call Our Miami Car Accident Lawyers

Is there fault in this case? If fault is an issue, you need to contact your personal injury lawyer in Miami, FL. It’s also important to contact your lawyer if there was a pedestrian involved, your pedestrian accident lawyer in Miami, FL will be a big help for your justice.

Is the police report inaccurate? Contact your car accident lawyer in Miami, FL if you feel as though the report is not accurate or fair to you. It’s important that the right details are recorded.

Another reason to contact your car accident lawyer in Miami, Fl is if you have no car insurance or your insurance company says you didn’t pay your premium. Insurance companies can be tricky to work with and an experienced lawyer is what you need to help you. Also, if your insurance company involves their lawyer, then you definitely need to hire your own lawyer.

Mr. Davis is also a motorcycle accident lawyer in Miami, FL and is glad to help those involved in motorcycle accidents who are seeking justice for their personal injuries.

If you are in a car accident, follow these steps: seek medical treatment, take pictures, get information from others involved in the accident, get names and numbers of witnesses, and contact your personal injury lawyer.

Contact Our Car Accident Lawyers in Miami, FL Today

Being in a car accident is rough. It causes emotional problems, stress, injuries, damages, and dealing with claims. Contact your personal injury lawyer in Miami, FL today to help you with every step of the way in winning your case.

Beware of Facebook, Twitter and Other Social Media

When bringing a personal injury claim, it is important to consider that many private aspects of your life will not remain private. Many insurance defense firms, private investigators, and defendants search and comb through social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. During the discovery phase of any litigation, most courts will allow the Defense to go through your Instagram, Facebook, and other social network accounts. Just one photograph or video may be taken out of context and destroy or lower the amount of monies awarded.

Recently, a woman who brought a personal injury case in Gwinnett County, Georgia tweeted about her travels and partying during the course of her case. As a result the jury lowered their damages award. The woman, a victim of a car accident, claimed that the injuries she sustained to her arm as a result of the car accident and she was unable to perform her job duties as a hairstylist. However, the Defense attorney provided tweets and pictures of the Plaintiff having fun in New Orleans with her friends and enjoying spring break on the beach. The Plaintiff asked for $1.1 million for her injuries and received $142,000.

What is the insurance and defense attorney looking for in Social Networks?:

  • Pictures of you having fun, showing that you have not been injured, and that you have returned to your normal routine;
  • Videos of you performing acts that you now claim you have difficulty with or cannot do;
  • Statements regarding the incident or accident;
  • Potential friends to interview and depose;
  • To catch you in a lie to damage

If you are involved in any type of legal matter, including a personal injury case here are a list of tips when using social networks:

  • If you can live without Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. CLOSE DOWN YOUR ACCOUNT. This will be the safest way that you will ensure that you will not damage your case;
  • Set your settings as private as possible;
  • Ask your friends and family to not tag you in any posts or photographs;
  • Do not discuss any aspects of your case on these social networking site;
  • Do not “check-in” anywhere.

In fact, many insurers are not trying to challenge liability as must as causation and whether the victim has a permanent injury.

The Miami based attorneys at Jeffrey R. Davis, P.A. are experienced personal injury attorneys who understand the techniques used by defense attorneys and insurances. The use of social media is just one of the ways that the other side will try to lower the damages awarded to a victim of another’s negligence. If you or a loved have been injured because of the negligence of another, contact us for a free consultation to discuss your potential case.

What to Look for in a Personal Injury Attorney – Miami

Your choice in a Miami personal injury lawyer can make a big difference in the amount of compensation you receive for your injuries, how your case is managed, and how your case is finally resolved. It is important that you obtain an experienced personal injury attorney who understands Florida law, understands the insurance companies and their strategies, and who has resources to fight for your rights successfully.

When choosing an attorney to represent your interests, you must search for an attorney that is the “right fit” for you and your case. Many personal injury cases takes months to several years to resolve. You will be working with your attorney, so it is important that you trust your lawyer and get along with your lawyer. Just alone in Florida, the Florida Bar reports that there are approximately 93,895 barred attorneys as of January 2013. There are many of attorneys to choose from – Do not sell yourself short.

What Do I Look for In a Personal Injury Lawyer?

Not every attorney is a personal injury lawyer. It is important that you ask the attorney that you are about to hire what type of law they specialize in.  I always like to compare it to medicine: You wouldn’t want a cardiologist checking out a problem with your bones. Similarly, you wouldn’t want a family lawyer handling your personal injury case.

These are the factors you should consider when picking your lawyer:

  • How many years has the lawyer been practicing?
  • Has the attorney ever been disciplined by the Floria Bar?
  • Does the attorney have a list of past results?
  • Does the attorney have a list of the past type of cases that he or she has handled successfully?
  • Will the lawyer take your case to trial?
  • What is your lawyer’s policy on communicating and speaking to clients?

The attorneys at Jeffrey R. Davis, P.A., a Miami Personal Injury law firm, specialize in personal injury cases such as workplace violence, wrongful death, car accidents, slip and falls, and negligent security. We pride ourselves in communicating with our clients and putting our clients first. Jeffrey R. Davis has been practicing personal injury law for over 25 years. Olga Porven, a former insurance defense attorney, has the insight into what the insurance companies strategies are in defending personal injury cases.

If you or a loved on have been injured as a result of the negligence of another, contact us for a free consultation or call us at 305-704-7415.